Technical Tuesday – To Start over again ??

July 2, 2013

A topic that came up on Monday’s with Myrt was Do I start my research over? Hmmm. With all of the new “stuff” I am learning about family history research, for a moment I thought that was a good idea. Several expressed similar reactions. But with the Genealogical Proof Standard (GPS), Inferential Genealogy, Evidence Explained!, Mastering Genealogical Proof, not to mention features in our genealogy database management programs and this new program Evidentia, one might think about starting over.

Now, my database is far from perfect. I didn’t know about the items just mentioned. But I did learn to cite my sources. I even thought how important that was for those who might look at my research “later”, but more so that I could answer one question, Where did you get that information from?

At some level, I was doing some of the ‘right things’, just didn’t know what I was doing. But to start over, I don’t think so.

I really want to see how “bad” my database really is, while applying the principles of this “new”, to me, steps and processes in my research before I jump to any conclusions. Where have I heard that from.

So, here is my plan.

My daughter is considering in applying to the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). In fact, she could join from a number of our ancestors and probably a couple I haven’t documented yet. The ancestor that we are going to work on, is Ann Cooper Whitall. There is a chapter in south Jersey that bears her name. But, no one has applied for membership for her in years, and has a ‘red flag’ (my term) linked to her name.

I exported the descendants of Ann Cooper, from my database, to a GEDCOM file so  that it could be imported into Evidentia. That worked well, easy to do, but Evidentia does not import sources and citations. Oh, right, it is Evidence or Source based, and I am trying to make is the ‘traditional way’ of name based. BUT, that lack of importing of my information makes total sense now that I think about it.

My Evidentia database now has a bunch of names, from Ann Cooper down to my daughter. I have my sources in my genealogy database, so I can work on each source, enter it into Evidentia, follow the steps that are included to create a “GPS” like file or profile for the people in my file.

I am NOT going to do everyone, but will concentrate on my “direct line” from Ann Cooper Whitall down to my daughter.

Since I have already spent some time figuring out how to get my Evidentia data into Family Tree Maker, my genealogy database management program, I know how I want to get the information back into the program, so I have a better documented file to submit.

Here is a link to the work that I did Evidentia and Family Tree Maker. Please remember that the Blog shows the most recent post at the top of the list. The real trick here, will be to see how merging individual people from Evidentia, back into Family Tree Maker will look at the “end of the day”. I do expect some clean up of that merge, but hopefully it will be to move some information around, from my old way of doing things, and to clean out unwanted or unneeded source material.


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